Watching my favorite genre of TV series, the detective show, I am reminded about the importance of evidence. The seasoned detective uses a lot of intuition because they have seen it all before and they develop tacit knowledge of criminal patterns that play over and over again. But when it comes to charging and convicting a criminal for a crime, evidence is the name of the game.
One of the keys to NLP and developing achievable outcomes is the “evidence procedure.”
1. So what is evidence procedure in NLP? The observable evidence that a person uses to define whether or not a goal has been successfully achieved. What will be happening when you achieve your goal or outcome? This is demonstrated in sensory language: what will I see, hear and feel when I have what I want? It also indicates the Evidence Frame. All outcomes and goals need evidence. Evidence helps you know where you are in the process.
2. What is important about evidence? Without it, you have no idea if you are even going in the right direction. Evidence represents the path. It will determine the truth or validity of something, beliefs included. Is something worthy of attention. In fact, all beliefs are validated through evidence.
3. In terms of the NLP outcome frame…. Other than assigning a value or purpose to your outcome, evidence is most important in guiding your way. It is one thing to set an outcome frame for something you want, it is another to pay attention to the evidence as you move toward your goal.
4. What do you ask yourself? Am I getting closer to my outcome or farther away? The only thing that will tell you is evidence. It comes down to “if what you are doing isn’t working, do something else.” When someone is so focused on the goal, they fail to pay attention to the evidence around them that tells them to change tracks. Then they wonder why they hit a wall.
5. Here is a checklist of things to do when you are in the process of getting something you want.
1. Make sure your goals are well formed and demonstrated in sensory words (see, hear, feel).
2. Have a clear evidence procedure of what is going to happen in sensory evidence that will indicate you are on the right track.
3. Keep records (written preferred) of your progress
4. Step back into the observer position to get a look overall at the landscape of your progress. (or through time). do consistently and often.
5. It is ok to look at what could go wrong. Having both move away and move toward evidence covers both bases. Just don’t focus on the ‘what could go wrong.’
6. If something does go off the rails, look at it objectively. Can this ultimately lead you to where you want to go or do you need to adjust your methodology?
Obstacles can actually be useful in the right frame. That is how post-its came into being.
7. Make sure you are aiming for the right target. Doing your research is critical in achieving what you want – John Noe’s story of the indy 500 track.
8. Time: sometimes our time frames are off. Even though goals are time specific, it is ok if you give yourself a little more time.
9. Get feedback. And use an expert to help you. Parents and friends are well-meaning but not necessarily your best guides.
Sometimes people get so focused on something that they wear blinders to what else is going on and never get the outcome because there was evidence that things weren’t working but ignored it or discounted it. Evidence and feedback are critical components of achieving your ideal life.